Tuesday, June 19, 2018

“Commonly a house-raise takes approximately two weeks”

I'm often asked if raising a home is a good idea. Queenslanders have been doing it for years. Lifting homes and building an extension underneath creates more liveable space, allows you to adapt to the changing needs of the environment, such as flooding, and increases the value of your home. Raising your house also enables you to add living space without increasing the footprint of your home on your existing block of land. 

It can also allow you the option to slide your home into a position that achieves the perfect aspect. You can choose to retain the existing layout of your home and add additional living space in the new area you’ve created below. Alternatively, you could use the opportunity to do a complete remodel of your home’s layout. While it is good to check pricing, the quality of the work should be the prime consideration when hiring a contractor for your house-raising project. 
Make sure your contractor has all the essential expertise in the field and will use the right materials and equipment for safe and proper house-raising. 

Depending on the size of the house the price can vary, from a small two-bedroom house ($15,000 to $19,000); a three-bedroom house ($19,000-$25,000) and a large three-bedroom house ($25,000-$35,000). (These prices do not include the cost of plans, disconnection or reconnection of services, stairs or a new concrete slab.) Commonly a house-raise takes approximately two weeks from the time the house is raised till the time it’s put back down on its new stumps.

QUESTION: My builder has told me I require a BA application even though I have a DA approval. What is the difference? 

ANSWER: A DA, which stands for Development Application/Approval, is lodged with council either by you or by your private certifier to ensure your proposed building work meets all necessary planning requirements, such as the location of your building work on your property, the land surrounding it and overlays such as flood hazards. Note that a DA is not always required. Seek advice from an experienced Town Planner. A BA is a Building Application/Approval, also known as a Building Permit. The Building Application consists of the paperwork you submit to your private certifier with the intention of receiving a BA. Your BA is an approval that ensures your building is structurally sound and will comply with necessary provisions such as fire resistance, disability access, energy efficiency, and even acoustic treatments. In Queensland, all building work requires a building approval unless it is considered self-assessable or exempt. 

QUESTION: I have an older townhouse with polystyrene tiles on the kitchen and dining-room ceilings. What’s the best way to remove them? Or can you sheet over them with Gyprock? 

ANSWER: Generally they are usually very easy to remove with a paint scraper as they will only be glued on with a very small amount of glue. You can sheet over them with Gyprock as long as you cut the sheets so you are able to get a strong fixing through to the existing timber or metal battens, etc.

QUESTION: In your experience with asbestos removal from your projects, is it better for the homeowner to engage the asbestos contractor to have the work done prior to the builder attending onsite? 

ANSWER: That is entirely up to the clients. Asbestos removal is a specialised field and is highly regulated, so we need to make sure that the contractors we use to comply. If the homeowner chooses to engage the contractor directly, we always insist on a clearance report outlining that the materials have been removed in line with the code of practice for removal of asbestos, along with reports identifying what materials have been removed so I know it’s safe for my employees and subcontractors to enter the site.